Monday, August 29, 2011
How to Have a H.E.A.R.T. for Your Kids - A Review
Company: Apologia Educational Ministries
Age Range: Moms and Dads
Other Products Available: Many wonderful resources and curricula
Brief Intro: (from the website)
How well do you really know your kids? What has God shown you about who they are and who they will become? He has sent these children into your home at this specific time for His glorious purposes. Indeed, you have been invited on the adventure of a lifetime, a journey on which you will see walls fall, seas parted, and giants slain. You don't need special skills or training for this journey—you need only to seek God and hold tight to His mighty hand! As with so many things, the first step to having a heart for your children is knowing your heavenly Father. As you seek daily to share His heart for your children, keep this inspirational book close at hand.
Table of Contents
H - Have a heart for the things of God. "This may seem like a strange place to start, but it really is the only place to start. In order to reach the hearts of your kids, you must first have a heart for the things of God." This makes sense, right? Only God can get your heart to where it needs to be, in order for you to fully commit your heart to your kids. Rachael uses a beautiful analogy comparing a born-again Christian's transformation to the metamorphosis of a caterpillar to a butterfly.
E - Enrich your marriage. "I have since become convinced that this point is indeed pivotal to developing a heart for our children. We must strive to consciously and intentionally enrich our marriages. We must be investing in the relationship with our spouses. Our children desperately need us to do this." Our children need this firm foundation; they need to know that Mom and Dad are committed and together forever. From watching our marriages, our children learn invaluable qualities such as forgiveness, loyalty, and sacrifice. We are to be committed to our spouses and to setting a godly example of what love looks like to our children. I LOVE the section discussing the difference between GRACE and TOLERANCE. "A cheap exchange if ever there was one."
A - Accept your children. "There is 'acceptance' and then there's acceptance. Your kids know the difference even if you don't. We may think we've accepted our children and all their uniqueness, but they know better." Our children are not accidents. They are made a certain way, at a certain time, to certain parents. They are exactly who God made them to be. We must accept them just the way they are, remembering that every great man and woman of God started out as a babe. Catch a glimpse of who your child may grow up to be for God. And on a side note, don't confuse acceptance with permissiveness.
R - Release them to God. "So often I hear parents say, 'All I want is for my kids to be happy.' Really? What if their happiness means making your life miserable . . . criminal behavior . . . breaking God's law . . . ? Is 'happiness' really the standard we want to set for our kids? . . . We must instead be focused on giving our children the joy of the Lord." It is our responsibility to help our children to be prepared for whatever task God may prepare for them. Pray for them; pray with them; fill their hearts and minds with stories of God's miracles - stories of how big our God is.
T - Teach them the truth. "Teaching our kids truth is the most important thing we can do or accomplish as parents. It's paramount that we give them knowledge and understanding of the one true and living God. This is the foundation upon which all other knowledge is built." Rachael does a wonderful job of explaining how lies have crept into our culture and how wrong is being portrayed as right. Teach your children the Truth; teach them of heroes of the faith who have lived out the Truth; and make sure to live the Truth "out loud".
This book touched and challenged me. Many times it brought me near to tears and caused my heart to ache. There truly is no other job in the world more important than leading these precious miracles to God. Press on; keep the faith; and never, ever give up.
Other products from Apologia which I have reviewed.
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Disclaimer: I received this book free of charge to review, as part of the TOS Homeschool Crew. The above is just my opinion. Please remember that opinions may, and do, vary.